A senior high school student in southwestern Illinois will be resigned to wearing pants to his prom, after a Tuesday decision by the school board banned him from wearing a kilt to the event.
William Carruba would have preferred to wear a kilt to honor his family's Scottish-Irish roots, but the Granite City School Board, instead, argued that the garment is "nontraditional" and not in line with the district's dress code, the Associated Press reports.
Carruba, 19, had purchased the kilt, made out of his family tartan, and had wanted to wear it for the first time at the senior prom, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. He had hoped that the school board might reverse its decision.
Jim Greenwald, the principal at Carruba's school, allegedly denied the student's initial request because he said men should dress like men at their senior prom, according to the Post-Dispatch. The principal has reportedly denied making that comment.
The matter inspired a bit of an Internet uproar, as Mark Sutherland, who maintains the blog A Scott Across the Pond, penned a fiery defense of Carruba's right to wear a kilt to his prom.
"America is the melting pot of the world’s cultures. And the St. Louis area is no exception," Sutherland wrote. "Unfortunately, this encouragement of culture and the celebration of Scotland does not extend to prom at Granite City High School."
The school reportedly apologized to Carruba over the matter and the student will wear pants and a tartan tie to prom instead.
Carruba is not the first student to run into problems attempting to wear a kilt to either school itself or a school event. In 2005, Nathan Warmack was kicked out of a school dance in Jackson, Mo., after he refused to change out of his kilt and into a pair of pants. Some school districts, including one in Ontario, have attempted to institute an outright ban on the garment being worn on their premises. That ban was not ultimately implemented.